Born in 1973, Dr. Ralph Gleis studied art history, history, and sociology in Münster, Bologna, and Cologne. He received his doctorate in art history in 2008 from the University of Cologne. He then held positions at the Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin (2006–2008), Antwerp’s Royal Museum of Fine Arts (2007), and the Haus der Geschichte der Bundesrepublik Deutschland in Bonn (2008–2009), where he worked on the exhibition Mental Images: Icons of Contemporary German History, on visual strategies in political communication. In 2009, he was appointed a curator in the art department of the Wien Museum (Vienna). There he was responsible for exhibitions covering the Biedermeier period and the cult 19th-century painter Hans Makart, as well as cultural-historical phenomena such as the 1873 Vienna World’s Fair and the Gründerzeit (Wilhelminian era), the era in the late nineteenth century which saw the foundation of the German empire. Dr. Gleis also served as project director for the new permanent exhibition being developed for the museum’s planned renovation.
“As head of the Alte Nationalgalerie, Ralph Gleis will bring outstanding specialist knowledge and highly relevant museum experience to the position. We are delighted to welcome him to our team,” said Udo Kittelmann, director of the National Gallery – Staatliche Museen zu Berlin. “With his research focus in political iconography, Dr. Gleis’s work with our 19th century holdings will open up important new perspectives for the future direction of the Alte Nationalgalerie.”
The Alte Nationalgalerie is a division of the Nationalgalerie. Other divisions include the Neue Nationalgalerie, the Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart – Berlin, the Sammlung Scharf-Gerstenberg, and the Museum Berggruen. The Nationalgalerie Collection encompasses art from the 19th century to the present day.